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News Brief

June 22, 2011MARYVILLE, MO |  By: Wayman

Public Defenders Caseload

Legal briefs have been filed involving counties in our region and the crush of court cases the Public Defender's offices are handling.

A state lawsuit at the supreme court level stems from last July when a division of the Missouri Public Defender's Office stopped taking clients and warned judges in north Missouri it could do the same here. The Missouri Public Defender's system points to complaints against its attorneys as one reason to allow them to turn clients away. In a brief filed with the state's highest court, the Public Defender's system points to two recent bar complaints against its lawyers. Director Cat Kelly says such complaints are not unusual.

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Judges and county attorneys in northwest Missouri continue talks with the State Public Defender's Office. There's no word on when the Missouri Supreme Court might issue a ruling.